The Collin County Commissioner’s Court in McKinney was standing room only on Monday, July 28, when residents poured into the courtroom to give public comments on a proposed resolution that would ban housing illegal immigrant minors in the county. Emotions ran high, but civility prevailed throughout the two-hour-plus meeting, where the community was overwhelmingly in favor of the resolution.
Fifty residents spoke, and only nine were opposed to the resolution authored by Commissioner Mark Reid. Themes of American sovereignty and safety, overwhelming the education and healthcare systems, affordability and taxpayer costs, crime, and the welfare of the minors dominated the public input.
Murphy resident Barbara Harless told the court that she supported the resolution because “it is the illegal immigration that this resolution addresses. What we are seeing is not immigration; it’s an invasion.”
Darrel Rivard of Prosper said, “Mark, God bless you, sir. It’s so refreshing to see a public servant who supports our laws,” adding, “I am disgusted with a federal government that supports law breaking.”
Dallas County resident Randy Turner drove up to the McKinney courthouse to tell Reid, “I appreciate the courage you’ve expressed.” He then said, “I am appalled at what is going on in Dallas County,” alluding to Democrat Judge Jenkins and his plan to house 2,000 unaccompanied alien children (UAC) in Dallas County.
Turner added, “This is legitimately sad for the children of Central America. They are being used as political pawns.”
Collin County resident Steve Selby commended Reid for the resolution. He said about the heated and passionate illegal immigration issue, “It seems we have two sides: one that says if you don’t like anybody coming into the country illegally, you are somehow racist.”
Rick Atkinson of McKinney was also for the resolution and had strong concerns about health and welfare. He also shared some frustration with the pro-amnesty crowd. He stated, “I am tired of being told I am not a Christian if I don’t support illegal immigration.”
A Plano resident later commented, “What is in question here is the role of government. We heard a statement from a pastor to consider to help the widows and orphans. He’s right. As a private citizen, I am commanded to answer that, but the government is not in charge of substituting itself for the church, synagogue, temple, or mosque.”
McKinney resident Carole Maxwell, too, supported Reid’s resolution and spoke up for the children, the children of Collin County. “There is a serious lack of foster parents and homes” for the children already in the system. We need to take care of Collin County’s children first.”
On the flip side, Coty Rodriguez, Collin County president of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), which also supports comprehensive immigration reform, was against the Collin County resolution. Her solution to the border crisis was for the United States to come to a “negotiation” to stop the influx and to take in the children.
Another anti-resolutionist Allen resident, Bethany Carson, was quick to reference the UN and its definition of “refugee” status, followed by insisting that news reports of disease brought by illegal immigrants were lies.
Jan Houston, who identified herself as a realtor who “knew Collin County,” said she was offended by the resolution. The Plano resident attacked resolutionsupporters as “old and retired.”
Soon thereafter, a twenty-something Collin County man spoke, thanking Reid for his “preemptive” action, followed by a senior citizen from Parker who pointed out to the middle aged Houston, “It might be wise to look at old folks like me who grew up with parents who came out of the Great Depression, WWII, Korea, and Vietnam, people who have attained a level of wisdom that those folks could benefit from.”
On Monday, August 4, the Collin County Commissioners will meet again on the resolution. Judge Keith Self will be in attendance, and the court will solicit more public input. Should Collin County pass the resolution, it will join Kaufman County and League City, the municipalities which recently passed similar resolutions.
Breitbart Texas spoke with Reid, who said the idea of a resolution started when Jenkins brought this issue “from the border to our backdoor.” He said, “I began hearing from constituents. I felt it was in everyone’s best interests to open a conversation and be proactive, rather than reactive.”
Reid told Breitbart Texas he was well aware there was no indication that UAC were going to be housed in Collin County at this time, but he noted that it was important for Collin County not to be blindsided with the federal government coming in at some future date and telling them that they are bringing minors into the county.
“We wanted to get on the record a position on behalf of the people of Collin County,” Reid added.
Collin County is a predominantly conservative North Texas suburb. In the 2012 election, 65 percent of voters chose Romney over Obama (33 percent).
Follow Merrill Hope, an original member of the Breitbart Texas team, on Twitter @OutOfTheBoxMom.